After today’s late-game loss, some Algerian players weren’t feeling too friendly with the press, and so one player, Rafik Saifi, decided he’d slap Asma Halimi in the face. For Saifi’s troubles and piss-poor attitude, he got slapped back by Halimi, who also caught his lip with her fingernail. You know, good measure and all. According to Yahoo Sports, the two have a history dating back to an article she wrote before the World Cup.
“She was standing there and the guy came here and he hit her,” said Francisco Aguilar Chang, a reporter from Guatemala who witnessed the incident. “Then she hit him back and her nail caught his lip.”
Saifi and Algerian football association officials refused to comment when quizzed by Yahoo! Sports.
After watching ESPN’s gut-wrenching expose about the treatment of lesbian soccer players in Africa, I can’t say I’m incredibly surprised by Saifi’s actions. Is that short-sighted of me? Perhaps, but that doesn’t mean all African men view women with a degrading viewpoint. If, however, you are from an area known to subjugate women, one can see how negative attitudes could easily permeate to the point where slapping a female journalist seems like a good, acceptable idea.
Thankfully, Saifi’s disrespect didn’t go unnoticed or unanswered.
H/t to Mike Hayes and Steady Burn for the find.